Mudcat Café message #2706092 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #122842   Message #2706092
Posted By: Steve Howlett
22-Aug-09 - 09:07 AM
Thread Name: Liverpool Folk Club 1970
Subject: RE: Liverpool Folk Club 1970
I was in Liverpool from 1970-74. I remember a folk club (on a Wednesday night?) at The Old Fort pub on Prescott Street, run by Maggie somebody. John was a regular - I spoke to him at Banbury FF a couple of years ago after he'd sung "Down at our school" in a latenight singaround. Glad to see he's still going strong, though his singing is no better!

Opposite the pub was a building site for the (then) new teaching hospital. One of the Irish labourers used to come over and sing "Rock Candy Mountain". One evening, shortly after the introduction of "Diplock Courts" in Northern Ireland, he sang a song he'd written himself, which had the chorus "They're locking up my countrymen without any trial. Oh! Freedom!" Tears streamed down his face as he sang it. We didn't see him again after that. I heard later that he'd gone back to Ireland and joined the Provos.

Then there was the night the Orangemen came in after their march through Liverpool and day out with the wives and kids in Southport. All us lefties in the front bar were suddenly drowned out by Loyalist choruses from the back bar. So we joined them, swapping songs and tunes all night.

I remember Ken Dunlop and Old Rope. Another regular was an old black guy who would just sit and take the piss, especially if somebody sang "Old Molly Metcalf" - he'd just keep repeating "Yan tan tether mether pip" - but could sometimes be persuaded to sing. Can't remember his name.

Maggie also ran a club in Birkenhead called The Fox In Grapes, which booked occasional guests.

So many memories...